|4/25/2023 6:32:10 PM cloudcaster|
|Just returned from a college career services seminar for my older daughter. The presenter showed a slide that implied a doctoral degree often wasn't worth the investment in time and money. In my heart, I disagreed, but didn't speak up in the seminar (other parents attending and I didn't want to be that annoying parent). Since I didn't have any facts and I'm a new user here on networthshare.com, I thought this would be an interesting place to see if that was true. As of today, the total count of public profiles is 245 with aggregate net worth of over $517M! In general, it's a well-educated group of people here. Here are the counts by educational attainment. On average, folks that achieved doctoral degrees have twice the net worth of Masters degree (I think you MDs and JDs are pretty high earners/achievers). Showed this to my daughter - to her it's just further proof that a Doctoral degree would be a good thing. I found it interesting, thought I would share!
|4/25/2023 6:35:02 PM cloudcaster|
|Average net worth by attainment:
Some high school: $355,790....High school: $1,437,637......Associate: $1,028,829.....Bachelors: $1,549,366.....Masters: $2,428,063.....Doctoral $5,098,953
|4/29/2023 10:29:06 AM mydogwantsmetoretire|
|I guess it depends on the field. Averages can be misleading so would look at median and other statistical measures.|
|4/30/2023 10:10:41 AM EscapeVelocity|
|I feel your pain on the college front (those checks are hard to write no matter your NW), as my twins are graduating this year, and now there's the question of grad school. Honestly, I am still not sure if advanced degrees (beyond those degrees required for certain professions, like MD/JD) are worth the expense--and, even if it's worth it, it'll depend on the degree. I do believe in kids taking a beat (even just a year or part of a year) after college to work and truly figure out what they want ... my two cents.|
|4/30/2023 10:35:52 PM testertest98|
|I think, in engineering, a doctoral degree is not worth it. A Masters however is.|
|5/1/2023 7:59:50 AM cloudcaster|
|***mydog*** I figured with such a low sample size (after parsing for education), the averages would pretty much paint the picture. The medians tell an interesting story of Associates vs Bachelors, though: Some high school: $180,432...High School: $613,124....Associates: $1,248,441....Bachelors: $1,144,179....Masters: $1,345,953....Doctorate: $3,260,106.....
***Escape***I think your two cents (working a bit to find out what you want to do with yourself) are on the money. My daughter is studying Bio-Chemistry and I think some real world experience doing grunt lab work would open her eyes on whether she wants to commit to years of this.
***tester***I think I agree with you. I've got both a bachelors and masters in engineering myself, and I've never felt like I hit an educational wall in my career. But for me, I really didn't do a cost/benefit back then. I was so sick of school (and math!) at the end of my masters, it ruined me to even entertain the thought of pursuing a doctorate. I adm|
|5/1/2023 8:25:15 AM cloudcaster|
|Here were the bin counts as of 4/25/2023:
Some high school: 6...High School: 23...Associates: 6....Bachelors: 114....Masters: 68...Doctoral: 26|
|5/1/2023 6:38:50 PM Appliedvalueinvestor|
|I cannot agree more on it depends what field. I got a PhD in theoretical Physics and took the academic route of Postdoc, Research Scientist, Tenure Track Faculty.. I was in my mid 30s before I actually started making some money (on par with someone who probably was making as much if not more as I was with a bachelor degree in CS straight out of college).|
|5/2/2023 9:06:12 AM MountainCEO|
|I think this is a very interesting conversation. Similar to Appliedvalueinvestor I got my PhD in Computer Science in my late twenties and started to make real money in my mid thirties. This site has a selection bias towards people who are focused on investing and increasing their NetWorth while the degree distribution is somewhat random. The numbers here are still too small to draw statistically sound conclusions. For example: We don't have any ultra wealthy people on this site. Gates and Zuckerberg would heavily skew these averages towards the crowd with only high school diplomas. On the other hand, I know a lot of people in academia with a PhD with a low networth who would bring that bracket way down if they had chose to come to this site.
|5/2/2023 12:21:24 PM admin|
|Love the conversations! By popular request, we just released an updated Comparison section. We replaced the min/max Net Worth amounts and instead show Average and Median amounts. We also added a sample size (e.g. n=12) for each comparison metric. These changes should provide more meaningful context. Enjoy!|
|5/2/2023 12:43:57 PM gzwb|
|Average and median is so much more useful than min/max. Thanks for the feature!|
|5/3/2023 6:16:45 AM cloudcaster|
|***Applied & Mountain*** I agree - drawing conclusions in the wake of huge selection bias and a statistically insignificant sample size is probably bad.. but...both you guys are pretty good evidence that PhDs can drive some serious net worth! Maybe it's not the degree itself, but the discipline and smarts it takes to earn it, like a marker for wealth building character traits.
***admin & gzwb*** Agreed! Thank you for the new features and thank you for this excellent site. It's quite eye-opening.|
|5/5/2023 12:25:52 AM azphx1972|
|@admin thanks for the updated comparison info! Agree that it's more useful.|
|5/9/2023 9:47:36 PM girlnextdoor|
|You'd also need to control for age, of course - folks in their 20s tend to have less than folks in their 50s. But also relevant (and not captured in this data) is the choices other than degree that people make .... I am certainly not maximizing my potential, as I've very intentionally focused on greater flexibility and fewer hours over maximizing earnings/savings since having my first child 4 years ago. So I'm arguably skewing the masters degree data down. Same situation for my husband (my profile is our joint finances), who also has a masters degree and very little income at the moment as he's been pursuing a passion project ... which is possible because of our comfortable financial situation. Our goal is to optimize our lives, not to optimize our net worth. :) |
|5/20/2023 12:42:12 PM Appliedvalueinvestor|
|Well said @girlnextdoor. |
|5/22/2023 12:31:48 PM cloudcaster|
|Agreed. You're wisdom/networth ratio is much, much higher than mine was at your age! Keep it up, you're approach is inspirational even for us old dogs. I'm looking forward to observing you're progress :).|